Why You Should Include Wellness Spaces in Your Design


Many architects are choosing not only green design ideas but also trying to plan for wellness spaces within a workplace. As more employers focus on both the physical and mental health of employees, architects are becoming more aware of not only the usability of a space but also how that design will affect the overall mood of a workforce. Note these considerations on why you should include wellness spaces into your next design:

Employees Relieve Stress Differently

Why You Should Include Wellness Spaces in Your Design

Twitter Headquarters in San Francisco

There are some employees who may want to destress in a quiet space that is mildly appointed with just a few furnishings while other employees may need to run around a track to blow off steam. Incorporate both kinds of wellness areas in your design in order to have a maximum effect on the entire workforce. Depending on the size of the building, choose a few different areas of each kind of stress reliever that employees can easily access throughout their day. 

Consider breaking down the wellness areas into more specific designs that offer different seating and workout options. Play to the many different personalities of the employees by offering different color schemes and themes to bring the most positive effect to a workforce.

Employees Are Introverts or Extroverts

Why You Should Include Wellness Spaces in Your Design

The Brainstorm Room at Codewise Office in Krakow, Poland

Not only will employees be different in how they choose to relieve stress but they will also be different depending on how they interact with others. Extroverted employees who want to have a quiet space may feel more relaxed in an open area with others around while introverted employees will want a private room so they can shut the door and decompress. The same is true for those employees who want to work out to relieve stress. Having a cardio room with just a few stations may bode well for introverted employees while extroverts want to chat and walk with a group of friends to relieve stress. Smart design will plan for these sub-categories in order to be most effective.

Employees Can Utilize Mini Areas

Why You Should Include Wellness Spaces in Your Design

Metromile Office in California

Use smart design practices if there is an area of your design that has room for just a few chairs and maybe a tabletop plant. Consider taking advantage of these little mini-wellness areas that could become a refuge for an overwhelmed employee. Make use of space creatively by providing a wall hinged tabletop or easily stored chairs that can be quickly put away when needed. Even creating a window seat with a few cushions and pillows can be just the thing that a busy employee needs to take a call or chat with a co-worker in a well-appointed space. Create little pockets of wellness all throughout the design to ultimately raise the overall level of efficiency throughout the building.

Employees Appreciate Smart Design

Why You Should Include Wellness Spaces in Your Design

Rapt Studio San Francisco Office

The good news is that many modern architects are already using wellness minded spaces in their designs. Wellness spaces include adequate access to natural lighting as well as overall air flow. If the natural lighting is not as prominent, you might consider creating a cozy space with small dim lights that can work just the same as natural lighting. Workstations that are open and allow for unobstructed views across the office are deemed appropriate for many modern buildings. Creating open pathways and enough space to move around the office is also a way to get employees moving without having them feel confined. All of these design practices easily coincide with wellness space design and are simple to incorporate with modern design techniques.

Creating a space of wellness in designs is incredibly important for today's workforce. Many employers understand the value of providing time and space for these areas to be used. Including wellness into your design will help not only the future employees who will be working in the building but also the employers who will see less in overhead and medical costs by providing areas to blow off steam. This is why you should definitely be including wellness spaces in your next design.

Rachael Baihn is an avid gardener, both indoors and in her backyard sanctuary. She can often be found exploring the Austin greenbelt or enjoying a new local restaurant.

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